Attention vs Retention

For an artist or band, maintaing a consistently high level of visibility is important. Particularly around releases, maximizing this awareness will help ensure the single, video or album you release reaches the largest number of people. This process of building your footprint could be summed up as the process of “attention”.

Even with a great attention level, though, artists often forget to have a post-release plan in place, to keep these new visitors around. It’s very common to see an artist release something, and then hear nothing from them until they’re ready to release something else. All the buzz tails off and dies back down. With nothing to follow up your release, interested new visitors don’t have anything keeping them there, and so they leave, usually for good. This process of keeping your fans consistently coming back could be summed up as the process of “retention”.

There are many examples of content used to focus on post-release retention, but here are a few:

  • Artists touring after releasing an album | Album = Attention, Tour = Retention
  • Electronic artist releasing a remix album | Album = Attention, Remix Album = Retention
  • Band release “Making Of” studio video | Initial release = Attention, “Making Of” release = Retention
  • Coffee shop “Get Your 5th Coffee Free” loyalty card | Ongoing program to keep you coming back 

If you spend thousands of dollars, hundreds of hours, and almost all of your energy focusing on a project you’re endlessly passionate about, don’t shoot yourself in the foot by forgetting to focus on retention just as much as attention.



1) The AAR Cycle

2) Passive Supporters, Active Fans, and Super Fans


3 thoughts on “Attention vs Retention

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